[Ads-l] Antedating "cheesecake" - revealing photographs (UNCLASSIFIED)

Mon Apr 1 16:11:51 UTC 2019


Slight antedating for "beefcake".
_Rockford [IL] Register-Republic_
23 Sept 1949, p 25 col 3
"Anthony Curtis, a muscular movie newcomer from the Bronx, New York, today puffed out his 43-inch chest and defied studios to pose him in any more 'beefcake' photographs."

> ----
> I posted a piece about "Cheesecake" and "Beefcake" on my blog.
> https://esnpc.blogspot.com/2019/03/shipping-news-and-starlets-revealing.html
> I found an example of "cheesecake" from 1930 that describes the expression as coming from "ship news vernacular":
> [Excerpt]
> Dorothy Mackaill, blondely attractive, posing for press photographers . . . . . They skidded in their intentions to get a “cheese-cake picture” .
> . . .  In case you’re a bit rusty in ship news vernacular a cheese-cake picture is one in which the subject exposes her legs . . . . The tabs eat
> ‘em up . . . .
> [End Excerpt]
> The Film Daily, September 11, 1930, page 5.
> That description is consistent with the primary origin story, that it was coined by an editor looking at a shipboard photograph of Elvira
> Amazar from her arrival in the US in 1915.  Barry notes this story on his site, which he says he took from an exhibition at the Museum of Sex
> in New York City.
> The source of that story appears to be a 1953 pictorial, one-off magazine entitled, "Cheesecake: An American Phenomenon," with Marylin
> Monroe on the cover.  It attributes the Elvira Amazar pics to a photographer named George Miller of the Bain News Services.  I've been able
> to find three pics taken on that day, and a comtemporary publication of one pic credits Bain, and images of an example of what appears to
> be an original surviving print has "[copyright] Bain" written on it.  Another print has identifying numbers that synch up with the numbers on
> the one marked Bain.  In other words, the documentary evidence supports the George Miller story.
> And even if George Miller didn't do it himself, it was likely a ship news photographer.  The earliest example of the word, and several early
> explanations of the word, all attribute its use primarily to ship news photographers, and define "cheesecake" specifically as posing a woman
> on a ship railing and having her hike up her skirt to show the knee.
> Beefcake is from about 1949.  An early example attributes it to the publicity department at Universal-International Studios.

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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